Supplemental Instruction (SI) is a free academic assistance program that helps students incorporate “how to learn” with “what to learn.” The Supplemental Instruction program targets historically difficult courses and places an SI leader inside the classroom.
SI is not for remedial students or courses. SI serves as a “safety net” for students who want to continue to succeed and thrive in academics, those who want to maintain their desired GPA, and those who want to improve academically. SI is for everyone enrolled in the SI course section. SI is designed to reduce attrition rates and increase retention rates.
No. SI is designed to work with academic study groups. Tutoring is usually designed for one-on-one or small group content review. The SI leader knows exactly what the students cover in class, unlike tutors. The SI leader serves as a facilitator; they do not re-teach course material. No new material is taught in SI sessions; SI encourages critical thinking, collaborative learning, and study skills.
The SI leaders facilitate three or more group study sessions per week outside of class. These study sessions are available to all students enrolled in the SI designated course. The study sessions are voluntary; however, attendance is strongly encouraged.
All SI leaders are paid student workers who have taken the historically difficult course and succeeded with an A or B in the course; they must also maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA. All SI leaders are recommended and approved by faculty members and trained in the SI process.
Research has proven that students who attend SI sessions on a consistent basis improve their final grades by 1/2 to one full letter grade and are equipped with the necessary course knowledge to become academically independent. SI groups focus on critical thinking skills, study skills, and communication skills. The ultimate goal of SI is to help SI participants become independent critical thinkers with skills that will help them succeed academically.